Mental Health and Plastic Surgery: Understanding Body Dysmorphia

Does Body Dysmorphia Explain The Rise In Plastic Surgeries? 

Over the past 30 years, plastic surgery has become a more accepted way of life for many people. Traditional notions about views on beauty have been changing as people start to realize that you’re beautiful regardless of whether or not you’ve had surgery done to your face or body or not. However, all this change in perspecitves doesn’t change the fact that surgery and mental health can be topics that are heavily stigmatized.

A common psychological profile of patients undergoing aesthetic surgery has yet to be determined. Several recent empirical research studies have revealed that cosmetic surgical operations can enhance body image, quality of life, and depressive symptoms—which is encouraging! However, if some patients have psychiatric disorders that make aesthetic surgery techniques contraindicated could be just as important. 

One of these psychiatric disorders is Body Dy/smorphic Disorder (BDD), also known as Body Dysmorphia, which is a mental disorder where you are overly concerned about the way you look. The main symptom of BDD is that you are overly concerned about a flaw in your appearance that is either imagined or very minor.

How many people does Body Dysmorphia affect? 

According to research, BDD affects 1% to 2% of the general population. Studies show that people who seek cosmetic medical treatments have a greater prevalence of BDD. In a study of 100 female patients undergoing cosmetic surgery in the United States, 7% satisfied diagnostic criteria for BDD, according to the results of a questionnaire.

How can be we identity Body Dysmorphic disorder in plastic surgery patients? 

The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Diseases (Fourth Edition) Structured Clinical Interview is the most widely used diagnostic instrument for the identification of a wide spectrum of psychiatric disorders. This tool, according to Picavet, asks targeted and guided questions to determine whether a diseases’ diagnostic criteria are met. There are a variety of techniques for determining the severity of BDD, however, for the development of valid and effective screening methods, more study and testing are required.

Surgeons performing cosmetic procedures are unlike other physicians. Cosmetic surgeons must advertise their skills and recruit patients, based on improving flaws ( Heyes, 2009 ). It is essential when dissecting and trying to develop a deep understanding of body dysmorphia that we also analyze the roles which the plastic surgeon plays in this.

What is the practitioner’s responsibility In this role?

As the use of aesthetic operations becomes more common, the demand for reliable screening methods appears to be pressing. Patients’ mental well-being is affected by plastic surgery in addition to their physical well-being. Practitioners can learn about their patients’ aims and expectations by using screening tools, as well as identify problems that may affect healing and outcomes.

Regular use of BDD screening tools can only help practitioners, patients, and the profession of plastic surgery as a whole.

Validated preoperative BDD screening techniques must be employed, and working connections with mental health colleagues must be created, to choose patients who are appropriate for cosmetic treatments.

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